Ubisoft showed off an impressive slate of videogames on Monday, in a pre-E3 press conference hosted by comedienne Aisha Tyler and someone named Tobuscus, who is apparently considered a YouTube sensation by people who pay attention to YouTube sensations. The briefing kicked off with dancing girls and an appearance by Flo Rida, but the games themselves showcased eccentric fantasy visions. We’ll be talking more about each game once E3 begins properly tomorrow, but here’s a quick rundown of Ubisoft’s big games at E3 2012:
Far Cry 3 — The demo for this tropical-island shooter had it all: colorful graphics, nifty gameplay, warriors doing a Maori war dance, a tribal woman suggestively thrusting, the ever-popular slow-motion neckstabs, and even a zipline! But the real twist is that Far Cry 3 apparently puts you inside the head of a man who is being driven insane, either by the jungle or the main bad guy. Think Apocalypse Now, but with ziplines. September 4.
Splinter Cell Blacklist — After bringing down the house at the Microsoft conference earlier in the day, the video we saw from the newest entry in the Tom Clancyverse continued to impress. Keep an eye on this one. Spring 2013.
Avengers: Battle for Earth — The unhelpful trailer didn’t give any indication of what kind of game this will be. It barely even looked like an Avengers game — the video focused on a battle between Spider-Man, Magneto, and various X-Men, with a brief look at the blockbuster superteam right at the end. Still, the game will apparently be on the Wii U in addition to the XBox, which makes it interesting just because. November.
Rayman Legends — Speaking of the Wii U, Ubisoft showed off its first Nintendo exclusive in an impressive co-op display designed to show off the new console’s tablet-control gameplay. The result was a candy-colored delight. Tyler summed up Legends perfectly: “I have no idea what was happening in that game, but it looked crazy, crazy fun!” No release date yet, but there may be one tomorrow, when Nintendo shows off the Wii U.
ZombiU — Want proof that the Wii U is a different animal entirely from the Wii? Try this on for size: An M-Rated Survival Horror First Person Shooter, set during a zombie apocalypse, which will be exclusively on Nintendo’s new console. Set to a rocking rendition of “God Save the Queen,” this awesome-looking trailer showed off various zombie attacks in London. Admittedly, there was no gameplay on display, and we’ve been fooled by awesome-looking trailers for zombie games before. (Rassum frassum Dead Island.) But come on. M-Rated Survival Horror! Nintendo! Cross your fingers on this one.
Just Dance 4 — Like dancing? This game’s for you. Don’t like dancing? Well, hey, Flo Rida! October 9.
Assassin’s Creed 3 — We already knew that Ubisoft was moving their historical-action franchise to the Revolutionary War. At the press conference, they showed off some gameplay, with new assassin Connor hunting beasts in the wilderness. The creators claim the game will cover about three decades of time before and after the Revolution. So maybe we’ll get to see the Constitutional Congress in action! Oh, history is fun. October 30.
Watch Dogs. The press conference closed with the most interesting, most mysterious, and least sequel-y title. A long conceptual introduction presented the modern world as an info-dystopia — “You are no longer an individual. You are a data cluster.” From there, we caught a look at what appeared to be an open-world action game. The player took control of a hooded mega-hacker who could take control of all technology — cell phones, security cameras, etc. At one point, the player took control of streetlights to cause a car crash, before getting involved in a mid-street shoothout. But in a curious last-second twist, it turned out that there was another players involved, controlling a character on a nearby rooftop. Apparently, the game features some kind of drop-in multiplayer system. It was all very weird and utterly unexplained. Let’s all hope for more info this week.
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